About the Campaign
Success! Lap Dancing clubs can now be licensed like sex shops not Cafes!
Find out more about our campaign, with Fawcett Society, making this new licensing a reality here:
Lap dancing clubs normalise the sexual objectification of women, create 'no go' areas for women and are a form of commercial sexual exploitation.
Yet since the introduction of the Licensing Act 2003, lap dancing clubs in England and Wales had been licensed as leisure venues - they required the same licence as cafes and restaurants. This prevented concerns linked to gender and sexism from being considered in licensing and has led to a long string of cases where local authorities were forced to ignore the views of local people.
Not surprisingly, the industry has doubled since 2004, to well over 300 clubs.
OBJECT's Stripping the Illusion campaign challenges the mainstreaming of lap dancing. We launched the campaign in April 2008 and joined forces with the Fawcett Society later in the year. Together we called for lap dancing clubs to be licensed in the same way as sex shops or sex cinemas not cafes.
Changing licensing laws will give far more control to local authorities and local people. It will better protect women who work in lap dancing clubs and women who live or work near clubs. It will start to strip the illusion that buying a women is the same as buying a cup of tea.
In November 2008, nine months after the campaign's launch, the government pledged to reform lap dance licensing. In November 2009, the Bill was finally passed by Parliament - lap dancing clubs are to be licensed as sex shops not cafes!
Furthermore, thanks to the huge level of support for the campaign, the Government made last-minute concessions to remedy serious loopholes in the original Bill.
The campaign has been an incredible testimony to people power and the democratic process! We of course will be working hard to make sure the new licensing regime is implemented widely and that any remaining loopholes are not exploited.
Thank you to everyone for your support